La Piazza Dario Ristorante Italiano

La Piazza Dario delights with delicious Italian food that is both traditional and creative

Vancouver’s restaurant scene has evolved to the point where one’s dining experience is virtually unlimited. However, today’s generation of foodies is increasingly drawn to authentically prepared, traditional cuisine; and that’s where La Piazza Dario Ristorante Italiano comes in.
La Piazza has been serving traditional Italian cuisine—from antipastis to soups and pastas—since its inception in 1977. Located just 10 minutes from Vancouver’s downtown core, the restaurant has stayed true to its mandate of delivering classic dishes made from scratch (the cooks even make their own stock, which takes a full day of simmering to get just right).
However, La Piazza also attracts new customers thanks to head chef and owner Claudio Ranallo’s knack of balancing tradition with innovation. “We’re able to create exciting dishes and stay true to our roots by employing people who have been classically trained and use authentic ingredients and preparation techniques,” says Lidia, Claudio’s wife.
Born in Ateleta, l’Aquila, Italy, Claudio started cooking as a youth, went on to become a culinary arts student at Cesare Augusto Hotel in Sorrento, then became a chef in the Lago Maggiore region of Northern Italy.
Upon immigrating to Canada in 1979 he joined La Piazza, but not as a cook. “Instead, he was hired as a kitchen helper,” explains Lidia. “He was almost ready to quit when one evening there wasn’t anyone available to debone a leg of veal. He [Claudio] did so effortlessly, the owners took notice; and this led him to become a cook, then head chef, then co-owner in 2004.”
Claudio’s family roots and culinary heritage inform La Piazza’s menu and make dining at his establishment a memorable part of the Vancouver restaurant experience.